Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wishes for the New Year

Happy New Year's Eve!

As 2010 approaches, I took some time last night to write out what I hope to accomplish in the new year. Although I was tempted to jot down resolutions like "Lose weight," "Eat healthier," and "Sleep more," I decided to take a different approach and jot down things that were tangible in mind-- little mile markers in my search for artistic expression and happiness as a human being.

I'm sure there are some things missing from this list, but I find that exhaustive lists can be self defeating, so here's to hoping that 2010 is all that I wish for it to be and more. Cheers!

2010 New Year's Resolutions
"Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors,
and let each new year find you a better man."
- Benjamin Franklin

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Words to Live By: Week 28

My friend Jeanine has cancer, but cancer does not have Jeanine.

We have so many things to be thankful for this year - but I think most of all, to have a Christmas where Jeanine is cancer-free - it's more than any of us could have ever wished for Christmas and for the New Year. Happy holidays indeed.

Week 28

Week 28

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Another Year Gone By

I turned 31 this year... 31... Good ol' 3-1... The big 31-rino. (I think I went too far with that last one.)

It was a good year, and I had an excellent birthday because of all of the well wishes I received from my family and friends. But I plan on setting my sights higher in 2010 so that I can give 31 a good send off. Are you with me?

31 Baby!

"Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years.
We grow old by deserting our ideals.
Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul."

- Samuel Ullman

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Words to Live By: Weeks 26 & 27

My friend Jeanine has cancer, but cancer does not have Jeanine.

An empty supply of 5x7 canvases at Michaels has kept me from updating this in a while. Luckily, I found a stash in Durham for sale, so all is well in the universe.

Jeanine had a busy week last week, visiting schools and slowly getting back into the swing of her job. She still has to take it slow, but I know it must be nice for her to be visiting schools again. She is such a phenomenal educator and adviser.

Week 26

Week 26
After Christmas, Jeanine's sister, Kristie, is coming down for a visit. The bond they have is undeniable. She has really been there for Jeanine throughout her ordeal with breast cancer, and I know Jeanine treasures her as a sister and as a friend.

Week 27

Week 27

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Getting Crafty with My Bad Self

Every year since we've married, Jason and I have been designing our own holiday cards. The first year, we were quite ambitious and made two designs: one for friends and family, and the other for nieces, nephews, and god children. The first was a portrait of us as figure skaters, and the latter one was of Jason getting into shenanigans in the Christmas tree.

Patten Christmas 2007 Design

Patten Christmas 2007 Design

2007 Designs

Last year, we opted to do one design - a simple ode to one of my favorite Christmas movies.

Patten Christmas 2008

2008 Design

This year, we decided to reflect the main source of our pride and joy - Jason's totally awesome mustache (however, if you ask the boy about it, I'm sure he'll be singing a different tune). If you don't know the story behind the infamous 'stache, you can read it here. Every day, Jason threatens to shave it off, but, so far, my "I didn't marry a man who breaks his promises" seems to be working. (In case you were wondering, the dear boy has until June 14, 2010 to keep the mustache, so mark your calendars.)

Patten Christmas 2009

2009 Design

One of things I like doing most during this time of year is making gifts for people. Sure, I love to shop as much as the next gal, but sometimes you just want to create a gift that says, "Hey, I cared enough to put my own sweat equity into this for you. Enjoy!" I think that's why we enjoy designing our own holiday cards so much. It's like giving a little bit of ourselves for Christmas.

This year, I was inspired once again by the 'stache to create these unique gloves for my girls at work. I bought fleece gloves at Old Navy and sewed my own felt mustaches to the index fingers on each glove. (Tip: Slide a wooden popsicle stick into the index finger to keep from pricking yourself with the needle. Works like a charm!) I liked the results so much, I even made myself a pair!

Mustache Gloves!Yes?

Ah, we meet again!

I also had enough felt left over to make these sweet flower pins. They were so easy and fun to make, that I, again, made one for myself. Note the diva-like quality of my pin.

Flower Pins in ProgressFlower Pin ConstructionFlower Pin Construction 3Special Flower PinsMy Flower Pin

Flower Power

I hope the holidays bring you all great joy and happiness and many opportunities for creative blessings. <3 Diana

Sporting My MK Scarf

"What is Christmas? It is tenderness for the past, courage for the present,
hope for the future. It is a fervent wish that every cup may overflow
with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace."
-Angnes M. Pharo

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

R.I.P. Journal

Today was our official last day of the Wreck This Journal meeting group.

Kerri Smith's Wreck This Journal Project

Although it didn't go as I had imagined, I can say that a lot of good things came out of the group:
  1. I discovered that I wasn't the only one who was yearning for a creative outlet. A lot of people shared that the meeting group was a good way to channel that energy.
  2. It was a great environment for sharing not only the assignments presented in the journal but also our own ideas for creative projects. We participated in a Photo Challenge and dabbled in Japanese calligraphy and created song lyric posters.
  3. Without the group, I don't think the company art show would have been as successful as it was. Everyone's input really contributed to its success.
  4. The journal really gave us a great excuse to do things we normally wouldn't do in a journal like set pages on fire, smudge pages with dirt, or vandalize pages to our heart's content.
BurnFingerprintsScratchCirclesGood ThoughtsPosterDoodleSpillChain

Where do we go from here? Well, we discussed continuing the meeting group but under a different pretense. Instead of letting the journal be our creative guide, we would start fresh and allow people to take turns leading the meetings. People would get the opportunity to lead the group into different creative endeavors. Here's what we brainstormed so far:
  1. Create "Green" Projects - Each challenge would be centered around trying to create something useful out of something we would normally just throw away (like pantyhose, plastic curtain containers, toilet paper rolls, shower curtain rings, egg cartons, plastic jugs, and shoulder pads).
  2. Continue doing other projects like Japanese calligraphy and introduce new projects like Celtic lettering.
  3. Participate in something similar to 1,000 words where members bring in photographs and other members accept the challenge of writing story consisting of exactly 1,000 words to go with it.
  4. Develop a book of Jim-isms (in honor of the always entertaining JP).
I think it's going to be an exciting follow-up to the journal. Hip-hip-hooray for creative vision.


"I fall back on this journal just as some other poor devil takes to drink."

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Words to Live By: Week 25

My friend Jeanine has cancer, but cancer does not have Jeanine.

With the success of her surgery behind her, Jeanine is taking it easy and healing before her radiation treatments start. This week she's been celebrating by buying new pieces for her wardrobe, purchasing items that she was never able to wear before. I can already sense that our future shopping trips together are going to include many v-neck shirts and blouses. Yay!

Week 25
Week 25


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